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Thread: Newbie...pool is filling now...please help

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    Newbie...pool is filling now...please help

    We have an Intex Easy set pool 15'x42"(this is the inexpensive blue pool with the blow up top ring)... water capacity of 3250g. Just set it up yesterday and started filling. We are having to fill it over 3 days as we have a well and don't want to cause any damage or run dry.

    The BBB method sounds great...I will go tomorrow and but my supplies.
    My question is about the test kit. Should I invest in a drop test kit for a pool this small or can I use strips?Is one from the pool store ok or should I order the one recommended on this site?

    And should I buy the kit tomorrow or is it ok to order online and wait a few days? I just don't want to wait too long and have the water turn murkey.
    I am unsure of what steps to take first....my 4 year old wants to swim in 2 days... can we add some chemicals now, swim and then test when the kit arrives and re-adjust?
    Sorry, so many questions...I have never dealt with pool chemicals before and am totally confused.

    If I can keep this small pool maintained, then DH has promised us an in-ground next year...this is a trial run for us so I want to do it right

    TIA!! Charlene
    3250g AG 15'x42" Intex
    Cartridge Filter

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Newbie...pool is filling now...please help

    Welcome to TFP!

    If you want to use the pool for more than a month or two, I recommend getting the fancy test kit over the Internet. With a small pool it is possible to go for several weeks, possibly longer, with only a very simple test kit, and then replace all the water when you have a problem. Many people do that, though I don't recommend that approach. I suppose it depends on how serious you are about swimming and how much you worry about safety. The more you swim and the more you are concerned about safety the more important having a top quality test kit is.

    For the first several days you can simply add 2 ppm of chlorine, if your pool is 3250 US gallons that is right around 2 cups of standard 6% household bleach, after sunset each evening. Leave the pump running for at least 30 minutes after adding the bleach. After a few days, you should have your test kit, and can start following the procedures we describe in Pool School.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
    Creator of PoolMath and Pool Calculator. Other handy links: Support this site, TF Test Kits, Pool School

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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: Newbie...pool is filling now...please help

    When I first started, I knew nothing too, and felt very intimidated. I used to use strips...then I found this site, and for temporary use (and it ended up as good testing practice) I bought a cheap HTH 6-way test kit at Wal-Mart for like $16. I ended up buying the TF-100, and honestly I was like "what did I wait so long for"? It is an awesome kit and I feel like I am in total control of my pool, no more guesswork, I know exactly what is going on. I very rarely go to the pool store for anything, which saves us a ton of money, I usually just go for equipment parts or liquid chlorine.

    I think if you start right off would the good kit, start off by saving your family a ton of money by maintaining your pool the BBB way, you're husband will be very impressed and the new AG will be a go! By the time you get the new AG you will be an expert, I promise!
    Helpful links: Pool School; CYA/Chlorine Chart
    24' round AG pool, 52" high, Raypak heater; Waterway 2 spd Pump;
    150 Sq ft. Clearwater Cartridge Filter; Former and DISSATISFIED "Pool Frog" owner
    http://www.PerfectlyClearPoolService.com

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    cubbybeave08's Avatar
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    Re: Newbie...pool is filling now...please help

    Quote Originally Posted by sqerlygirl
    We have an Intex Easy set pool 15'x42"(this is the inexpensive blue pool with the blow up top ring)... water capacity of 3250g. Just set it up yesterday and started filling. We are having to fill it over 3 days as we have a well and don't want to cause any damage or run dry.

    The BBB method sounds great...I will go tomorrow and but my supplies.
    My question is about the test kit. Should I invest in a drop test kit for a pool this small or can I use strips?Is one from the pool store ok or should I order the one recommended on this site?

    And should I buy the kit tomorrow or is it ok to order online and wait a few days? I just don't want to wait too long and have the water turn murkey.
    I am unsure of what steps to take first....my 4 year old wants to swim in 2 days... can we add some chemicals now, swim and then test when the kit arrives and re-adjust?
    Sorry, so many questions...I have never dealt with pool chemicals before and am totally confused.

    If I can keep this small pool maintained, then DH has promised us an in-ground next year...this is a trial run for us so I want to do it right

    TIA!! Charlene
    Charlene,
    If you are on a test run then I want to add my two cents worth. I owned one of these for 5 years...Don't even waste your time with test strips...I used them with my intex...I had the same pool size you do. They are worthless. every year I would get algae. The thing you want to do, is stay away from trichlor tables and stick with bleach or liquid chlorine...Get the cheap test kit for right now you can get the one that pool mom suggests it will test your chlorine, PH and Total Alkalinity and maybe even Calcium hardness which if it does it is even better...should be able to get one for under $20...The problem with this pool is that the filter and pump are not big enough to keep the pool clean. The filter cartridges are too flimsy to actually filter out anythin smaller than a fish...and the blow up top holds a lot of gunk on the uderside of the tube...You will want to brush under there weekly...Keep your chlorine levels betwee 3 and 5 ppm and you should be ok. This is what I didn't understand when I owned the pool. If only I knew now what I know then...The bottom line is this...get a really good test kit, either a TF test kit or a Taylor 2600...This is the kit I got last summer when I got my new pool...It has worked well but I am getting the TF kit this summer...Too much guessing on colors...Anyway...if you have the either the A size or C size filter cartridges...Change them two to three times per week...If you don't get algae...you can just spray them out and then reuse them once or twice more...but not much more than that. And by the way...let DH know that if it goes bad it is not really your fault and you should not be held responsible for what ever happens and it certainly should not keep you from getting the wondeful new pool next year...The odds are not in you favor with this pool...They are tuff to take care of...But if you can keep it clean for three or four months then you definitely DESERVE THE UPGRADE...You cannot leave this pool alone for more than a day or two...It will get away from you. I left to go camping on a Friday one summer the water was sparkly and clear...came back on Sunday and it was green...Good luck!

    beave
    Beave
    Aqua Leader 24ft Round AG Wil-Bar Influence w/54 inch walls 13,500 gallons
    Swimline J-Blue Opal Liner, 1 4X20 Fafco Solar Bear Solar Heater
    Hayward 2 HP Swim Pro Voyager Pump Micro 150 with 4 way timer
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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: Newbie...pool is filling now...please help

    TF100 or a Taylor K-2006

    If I knew THEN what I know NOW.....
    Helpful links: Pool School; CYA/Chlorine Chart
    24' round AG pool, 52" high, Raypak heater; Waterway 2 spd Pump;
    150 Sq ft. Clearwater Cartridge Filter; Former and DISSATISFIED "Pool Frog" owner
    http://www.PerfectlyClearPoolService.com

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    cubbybeave08's Avatar
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    Re: Newbie...pool is filling now...please help

    Quote Originally Posted by frustratedpoolmom
    TF100 or a Taylor K-2006

    If I knew THEN what I know NOW.....
    Have you forgotten I am dyslexic...I even flip flop cliche's...If I knew then what I know now makes so much more sense...
    Beave
    Aqua Leader 24ft Round AG Wil-Bar Influence w/54 inch walls 13,500 gallons
    Swimline J-Blue Opal Liner, 1 4X20 Fafco Solar Bear Solar Heater
    Hayward 2 HP Swim Pro Voyager Pump Micro 150 with 4 way timer
    Swim Pro Voyager Filtration System with Hayward ABS Pearl wide mouth skimmer

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    Casey's Avatar
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    Re: Newbie...pool is filling now...please help

    Quote Originally Posted by sqerlygirl
    We are having to fill it over 3 days as we have a well and don't want to cause any damage or run dry.
    I didn't see anyone mention this but you may need a sequesterant being that your water is well water. If you don't, your water could turn a dark brown from the iron in the well water reacting with the chlorine.

    I don't know much about it because I don't have well water but I've heard enough about it to atleast want to warn you. If I'm wrong, someone will be around to correct me. I wouldn't want your DH to come home and see that ruining your chances at an inground next year!
    I'd bet you my bikini you'll never get TFP water from a pool store!

    24' Sharkline Venture De Filter

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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: Newbie...pool is filling now...please help

    Casey you're not wrong, it is a good idea to have your fill water tested for metals, you'll have to go to the pool store. If metals are present, you'll have to use a sequesterant. It would be a good idea to do this before you add chlorine to the pool. You can just take a sample from your hose or whatever, and head on over, no need to wait till it's full to test the water for metals.

    If metals are present, sequesterant has to be maintained, usually requiring a monthly booster after the initial startup dose.
    Helpful links: Pool School; CYA/Chlorine Chart
    24' round AG pool, 52" high, Raypak heater; Waterway 2 spd Pump;
    150 Sq ft. Clearwater Cartridge Filter; Former and DISSATISFIED "Pool Frog" owner
    http://www.PerfectlyClearPoolService.com

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    Re: Newbie...pool is filling now...please help

    I managed one of these for two seasons (actually the 18' round one). They are tougher than a 30000G in-ground. The only good news is you can dump and fill if you have to. Beave is absolutely right about that filter; and I'll add that the Intex pressure side bag-vacuum is also a joke. The only way I could keep that thing clean was use a real pool vac, work real fast, and send the water to waste because the filter would just throw everything back into the pool. Absolutely stay away from Dichlor/trichlor as your CYA can get out of hand real fast. I like the bleach every day approach--and bleach only with an initial CYA around 40. But jump in as soon as you like, as long as you keep up Jason's bleach dose nothing bad is going to happen.

    PS. Not all wells have metals--mine is virtually without minerals, and officially too soft for drinking water. The Culligan man starved to death around here. Have your well tested for metals, hydrocarbons, and biologicals--it is worth knowing what is going on there for other reasons.
    Current: 28,000G 18'x36' I/G AnthonySylvan Plaster; Waterway 60 sq.ft. DE Filter; 1.0hp x 1.65 SF Two-Speed (B2982) WhisperFlo; 2004-Present
    Previous: 40,000G 20'x40' I/G Koven unlined WWII salvage 5/8" marine steel; Lomart Stainless Sand Filter; 3/4hp Hayward SuperPump; 1946-2003 (managed by me from about 1964)
    Ancient Taylor K-2000, upgraded with Taylor CH, TA, and FAS-DPD, and TFT CYA tests.

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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: Newbie...pool is filling now...please help

    Quote Originally Posted by Durk
    PS. Not all wells have metals--mine is virtually without minerals, and officially too soft for drinking water. The Culligan man starved to death around here. Have your well tested for metals, hydrocarbons, and biologicals--it is worth knowing what is going on there for other reasons.
    Excellent advice! I don't know if anyone has heard the story about the town over here by me, Crestwood IL, they found out that the town has been secretly using a well that the EPA ordered SHUT DOWN in 1987 due to contimination of drycleaning solvent chems....they've been using this well all along to supplement their residents' "lake michigan water" supply to keep the resident's water bills lower. Huge scandal here now- everyone blaming every disease and affliction on the water.
    Helpful links: Pool School; CYA/Chlorine Chart
    24' round AG pool, 52" high, Raypak heater; Waterway 2 spd Pump;
    150 Sq ft. Clearwater Cartridge Filter; Former and DISSATISFIED "Pool Frog" owner
    http://www.PerfectlyClearPoolService.com

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    cubbybeave08's Avatar
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    Re: Newbie...pool is filling now...please help

    Quote Originally Posted by Durk
    I managed one of these for two seasons (actually the 18' round one). They are tougher than a 30000G in-ground. The only good news is you can dump and fill if you have to. Beave is absolutely right about that filter; and I'll add that the Intex pressure side bag-vacuum is also a joke. The only way I could keep that thing clean was use a real pool vac, work real fast, and send the water to waste because the filter would just throw everything back into the pool. Absolutely stay away from Dichlor/trichlor as your CYA can get out of hand real fast. I like the bleach every day approach--and bleach only with an initial CYA around 40. But jump in as soon as you like, as long as you keep up Jason's bleach dose nothing bad is going to happen.

    PS. Not all wells have metals--mine is virtually without minerals, and officially too soft for drinking water. The Culligan man starved to death around here. Have your well tested for metals, hydrocarbons, and biologicals--it is worth knowing what is going on there for other reasons.
    I have actually seen people go out and by a 3/4 HP pump and filter system for their intex pools...It gives a little more turnover...I don't think that stupid pump turned the pool over once a day running 24/7. If I had only used liquid bleach or chlorine...I would have been better off. I used trichlor in a floater or just stuck them in the lame side skimmer. And boy what a mess I would have by July. Give some thought to upgrading the pump...You will have an easier time keeping it clean.
    Beave
    Aqua Leader 24ft Round AG Wil-Bar Influence w/54 inch walls 13,500 gallons
    Swimline J-Blue Opal Liner, 1 4X20 Fafco Solar Bear Solar Heater
    Hayward 2 HP Swim Pro Voyager Pump Micro 150 with 4 way timer
    Swim Pro Voyager Filtration System with Hayward ABS Pearl wide mouth skimmer

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    Re: Newbie...pool is filling now...please help

    Thanks for all the advice...I got my test kit and ended up only needing chlorine and muriatic acid. The pump does seem pretty pathetic...hopefully it will work for one season.

    No problems with metals in the well water thank goodness

    We have already taken a dip...even though the water is soooo cold. I think it will get ALOT of use this summer!

    Charlene
    3250g AG 15'x42" Intex
    Cartridge Filter

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    cubbybeave08's Avatar
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    Re: Newbie...pool is filling now...please help

    Quote Originally Posted by sqerlygirl
    Thanks for all the advice...I got my test kit and ended up only needing chlorine and muriatic acid. The pump does seem pretty pathetic...hopefully it will work for one season.

    No problems with metals in the well water thank goodness

    We have already taken a dip...even though the water is soooo cold. I think it will get ALOT of use this summer!

    Charlene
    Charlene, I would suggest that you test daily for a week or two, just to get the feel of your pool. So you can know when you lose chlorine, and get an idea when to add, make sure your chlorine is accuarate and what not. Keep the cartridge as clean as possible all the time...you can hose it off and reuse once or twice, but not much more...They are paper thin. Good luck and if you run into trouble you know where to find us...Good luck on getting that new pool next year!!! You will be so on top of that one for having the intex to practice on this year...My pool now is so easy to take care of, because I could manage the intex.
    Beave
    Aqua Leader 24ft Round AG Wil-Bar Influence w/54 inch walls 13,500 gallons
    Swimline J-Blue Opal Liner, 1 4X20 Fafco Solar Bear Solar Heater
    Hayward 2 HP Swim Pro Voyager Pump Micro 150 with 4 way timer
    Swim Pro Voyager Filtration System with Hayward ABS Pearl wide mouth skimmer

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